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Thursday, August 29, 2013

My Weight Loss Story




This is a true story.  No, my wife has not read it, but I have no doubts that she would approve of me posting it in this forum.  If truth be told, she could easily tell this exact same story herself. 

I am a thirty-two year old male about 5' 10” in height.  My wife and I have now been married eleven years.  Something very special to me this particular anniversary, or close to it, is that my weight has returned to what it was when she and I were married. 

I basically stopped growing (in terms of height) when I was in high school.  This is when I was ‘fit' and in my ‘prime,' or so people said.  Back then I weighed about 170 pounds.  Then I went to college for four years and was away from home.  They always referred to the “freshman fifteen” with kids who went to college.  I think this was supposed to mean that, in general, kids going away from home for the first time to college typically gained fifteen pounds.  Maybe they started eating more poorly when they got away from Mom's good cooking.  The “freshman fifteen” also applied to me, only in my case, the reverse was true.  I didn't have a car or bicycle, so what that meant is that I did a ton of walking around campus to and from all of my classes… all of which made me lose fifteen pounds.  And I ate horribly, too, but it didn't seem to matter at all. 

Or, maybe the weight loss was because I fell in love with my wife sometime during college, and “pined” away for her.  I wanted to wait until school was over with before asking for her hand in marriage, which seemed to be the prudent thing to do, and that was three very long years away.  You'd perhaps have to understand a little about my church to know just why something like that could cause a man to lose weight.  In a desire to encourage purity before marriage, my church discourages dating, unless marriage is basically imminent and forthcoming.  Needless to say, it is most difficult for a man that falls in love, who is withheld from the closeness he craves, where the only contact he has with the woman of his affection is a handshake on Sunday.  It makes me wonder how Jacob did it in the Bible, when he worked seven whole years for his beloved Rachel.  I could barely stand just three!  Even so, this might have had something to do with my weight loss. 

My wife and I got married shortly after I graduated from college, and settled into life.  I'm an accountant by trade and went from being fairly active to very sedentary.  I was completely ignorant as to how this could affect my body.  At first a few pair of pants here or there started to get tight.  And then they had to be thrown away.  It sort of creeps up on a fellow!  Ten years passed.  A few times in there I'd try to do some things to lose weight, but nothing seemed to stick, or help me lose the amount of weight I needed to. 

This past year in the office where I work, a man that shares office space with us began this program of counting calories to help himself lose weight.  Being “male,” I'm not the best at noticing things, but after a period went by I about did a double-take when I looked at this man.  He'd lost over forty pounds and looked absolutely terrific!  And I told him so, too, begging him to share with me just how he did it.  I don't know if the site administrator here will bleep this out.  However, I'm truly not intending to advertise anything here, except something wonderful that happened to me and I wanted to share on this board.  This gentleman directed me to an internet website called:  www.calorie-count.com.  Diets are hard, though, and I knew it wasn't going to be fun.  I was 240 pounds at the time, and a lot needed to come off.  So I stalled, probably for more than half a year. 

On February 6th of 2007 I finally quit stalling and went to the website. In all honesty, I think I was finally “angry” enough at myself to do it.  There's really no other explanation than that.  I hated that my pants perpetually felt tight around my waist.  I couldn't stand the double-chin I saw when I looked in the mirror or saw myself in pictures.  I saw how hard my dear wife worked to keep her weight off, because she knew how much more attractive it made her to me.  I was hot all the time, and sweating for no good reason, even in the middle of winter.  There had also been a few snide remarks made by some folks about how I looked, and frankly, they didn't feel all that good.  Even though maybe such comments were a little mean, I can't dispute them at all.  They were right!  I was overweight, and it was for no good reason other than simple laziness on my own part.  And I hated myself because of it.  It was time for a change, and I dove in head first with a vengeance. 

Everything is free on that website. I set up an account, and then began the journey to “count calories.”  It asked a few questions about me.  I had to tell them my sex, age, current weight, the weight I eventually wanted to weigh, and how long I wanted to take in getting there.  I think they also wanted to know my body type, or how large my bones are, and my lifestyle (sedentary versus active).  Shorter is better, right?  I wanted to get this done and over with, so I tried to do it really fast.  The system wouldn't let me.  I think it's structured so that it will only let you lose weight at a certain speed.  They said that most men shouldn't eat less than 1,500 calories per day; to do otherwise isn't healthy.  Okay – I'm not a doctor, but that's what they said.  With this info, they told me how many calories per day I could eat, and they told me about when I'd reach my goal.  At first I despaired.  I wanted to lose seventy pounds, and it told me this wouldn't happen until way out in the future.  It seemed like a mountain!  However, they say that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.  So, I grabbed my “mountain climbing gear” and took that step, and haven't looked back since. 

Each morning I weighed myself.  When I got to work, I entered the weight in the internet log, which keeps track of it for me and plots a nice ‘progress' chart.  Throughout the day, when I ate things, I'd search for them on this internet site, and log them into the system.  It counts the calories I eat, and lets me know just where I'm at.  I made this special little paper form for the weekends so I could note my weight and the things I ate.  It was embarrassing to me to have to drag out this dumb little paper to record the things I ate, especially when we had meals with our friends or family, but I did it anyway.  When a person feels desperate, you do a lot of things, I suppose.  These were also entered into the computer when I got back to the office.  Maybe entering them wouldn't have been necessary, but for me there was an accountability aspect of this that was good.  My dear mother thought I got a little obsessive about it.  And perhaps that's true to some extent.  I've logged literally everything I've eaten, even if it's just a simple little life saver candy, or a few raspberries I've munched on while walking through Mom and Dad's garden.  I've gotten in the habit now of asking myself before I eat anything, just where I'm at in my caloric intake for the day, and just how the thing I'm about to eat is going to affect that.  It's made for some painful decisions sometimes (such as going without supper because I ate too much earlier in the day), but again, I think it's been worth it.  And maybe it was obsessive, but like I told my mother, it's WORKED! 

And I can surely testify that while this was indeed worth it, it was most certainly NOT easy.  It's one of the toughest things I think I've ever put my body through!  The thing that kept me going, though, was that the results were immediate from the very first day.  The very first day I lost 2.6 pounds!  The next day another 1.6 pounds went away.  The third day 0.9 pounds said “goodbye.”  The fourth day, 2.1 more pounds left.  I was ecstatic!  Ten pounds gone in just a week!  It slowed down later, of course, but maybe that quick start was helpful for this day and age of “instant gratification!”  I've basically been one VERY hungry boy for about five months.  Very hungry.  I probably should go see the dentist, because the ‘teeth gritting' to make it through those hunger pangs have probably wore down all my molars!  However, I can also testify that enduring those hunger pangs was the worst right at first.  Then it got easier.  I don't know if that means my stomach shrunk, or if I just finally got enough gumption to be able to have “power” over my own body, and the ability to deny it what it wanted. 

In some ways it was funny… a person has to keep some sense of humor through it all.  There were many, many nights I would go to bed, and be lulled to sleep by the “musical symphony” of my stomach at war with itself.  It would protest, growl and grumble.  And I would almost chuckle out my reply, “Pull it from inventory, boys.  I'm done eating for the day!”  And usually by morning, the “boys” in my stomach had figured things out, and the hunger pangs were gone.  And then I'd pop out of bed, ready to go hop on the scales, to see just how much “inventory” they had dispensed with during the night! 

This morning, almost exactly five months after commencing this journey, I stepped on the scales and about wept to see the message it contained.  It said I was 170.1 pounds.  I'm 69.9 pounds less than I was earlier this year!  This is a loss of almost ½ of a pound each day since then.  Okay, so I technically still have 0.1 pounds to go to officially meet my goal, but for all intents and purposes, I'm there.  I do intend to break 170, just so I can say I did it, but this is where I stop.  I am content, and thrilled that my beloved wife no longer has to go to bed with an overweight man.  Now will begin the task of seeing if I can maintain this.  I've informed my dear wife more than once that I only want to make this journey once in my whole life.  This has been painful both to my body, and to my wallet.  I have no desire to do this again – I've yoyo dieted before, but I want this one to stick.  After the first fifty pounds came off, I started exercising a little, too, and I think that will help in the future if I keep it up. 

Hopefully you will forgive me if I sound overly exuberant, or if it sounds like I carry a certain amount of pride with this accomplishment.  I am dearly trying to fight that urge, and rather wish to give my great God the credit for helping me through this.  It's only His mercy that has carried me through this and brought me this gift.  I hope my life and body henceforth can be dedicated in greater discipline and of better use to Him.  In many ways, I think He has taught me a few things in going through this.  There are plenty of other areas in my life that need work, some of which have been pointed out by a few folks on this site incidentally, and if the Lord is able to help me do something that seemed like a mountain, then surely He is also completely capable to grant grace to help fix other issues in my life. 

This is especially posted with the intent of hopefully inspiring or helping someone else to achieve the same thing.  We're all made differently, I suppose, and maybe this wouldn't work for someone else, but I wanted to share it in the interest of encouragement anyway.  Believe me when I say this – if I could do this, then truly anybody could.  Has it helped my marriage?  In many ways, I think it has.  Maybe it seems like a small thing, or something that shouldn't matter, but I do feel better now when I make love to my wife being this way than when I was heavier.  I don't know just why that is, but it's true.  And for the gentlemen who happen to read this, I think there is another “side benefit” of losing a few pounds, and it was something I wasn't expecting. The weight loss seems to help “downstairs,” if you know what I mean.  I look down there now and wonder, “Where in the world were you hiding?”  Suffice it to say, it has allowed my wife and I to enjoy other positions in lovemaking we previously weren't able to.  So, the weight loss has become more meaningful to me than just for health purposes! 

To any currently trying to lose weight, sometimes fighting valiantly but finding it a struggle, I know exactly what it feels like.  But please take hope and just grit your teeth!  In many respects, I think this is more than just a physical battle for us, it's a spiritual one, and one of learning how to bring one's body into subjection.  This Scripture went through my mind many times while going through this.  The beloved Apostle was talking about another concept with these words, but I think it surely applies to this battle as well.  I hope it will encourage you as it encouraged me: 

Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.  And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.  I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:  But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.  (I Corinthians 9:24-27) 



2 comments:

  1. Your story is very inspiring! Lose weight for your own benefit and not to please your wife, or anybody else. It maybe a long and arduous process, but with enough determination and discipline, you'll slowly reach your goal. You can also try laser therapy, proven safe and effective, to help you shed weight fast without the need to lessen your food intake. But of course, it is still advised to follow a balanced diet.

    -Rey Portillo @ RPMLaserTherapy

    ReplyDelete
  2. New Diet Taps into Pioneering Concept to Help Dieters LOSE 15 Pounds in Only 21 Days!

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